Wednesday, November 26, 2014

12 Days of Giveaways Day 11: Christmas CD & Starbucks Gift Card

12 Days of Giveaways Day 11: Christmas CD & Starbucks Gift Card
It's day 11 of the 12 Days of Giveaways, and today's giveaway is brought to you by the lovely Karen from A Peek at Karen's World!  Karen is awesome, and we've been bloggy friends for a while.  Her blog posts are informative and typically very humorous, she's a great writer! Let's get to know her a bit!

Karen from A Peek at Karen's World

How do you usually celebrate the holidays?
I split my time between my parents. I usually stay in town, although last year I ran off to Central America to volunteer over Christmas and New Years. Normally the holidays are kind of low-key but very festive and fun. Lots of food, games, and hanging out with the family.

Are you a Black Friday/Cyber Monday shopper?
If so, what are you planning to shop for those days this year?
I sometimes like to go out on Black Friday just to witness the madness, but I rarely buy anything. I'm going to do most of my shopping online and with small businesses this year.

What is your favorite holiday food?
TURKEY! I can't get enough of fresh, oven-roasted turkey.

What's at the top of your holiday wishlist this year?
Um...I can't say. It's sort of a secret...

Are you planning any awesome posts on your blog this holiday season?
All of my posts are awesome! :-) No, really, I don't have anything particularly planned, but since this is my first Christmas with my boyfriend and his kids, I want to make the whole season awesome.

What is our favorite thing about blogging?
The friendships, definitely.

Karen is giving one lucky winner a copy of the O Holy Night Christmas CD by Millennial Choirs & Orchestra & a $10 Starbucks Gift Card!  Giveaway is open worldwide and ends 12/04/14 at 12AM.
Entering below agrees to all Terms and Conditions within the Rafflecopter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Come back tomorrow for day 12!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

5 Tips on Running a Good Blog

5 Tips on Running a Good Blog

These days a good blog is essential for any small business, but if you dive in head first without a plan of attack you’ll simply be wasting time. Don’t write for writing’s sake, but put some thought into each post and you’ll increase both traffic and conversion rates thanks to the personal touch a blog provides. Here are five tips to think about while running your personal or business blog:

Update regularly
It’s important to ensure you update your blog on a regular basis – once a week is a good minimum. Don’t post anything just to keep it ticking over, but find something interesting about your industry, or something in the world of current affairs that you can comment on, and you’ll be on the right track. A neglected blog makes it look like you don’t care about your website, and therefore that you don’t care about your website visitors.

Break up the text into chunks
This one is a simple writing recommendation but one that is often ignored. Blog posts should always be a minimum of 300 words, and ideally they should be longer. But write all of that interesting content in one large paragraph and nobody will read it, which can increase your bounce rate and have a negative SEO impact on your website. Short paragraphs with subheadings are much more pleasing to the eye, and much easier for readers to process, giving your post more impact.

Use strong imagery
In a similar vein to the point above, images help to break up your blog post and can support your writing. If you’re looking to have your post shared amongst your social networks and industry peers, you’ll certainly need to make sure you have good quality images to help make it more appealing to readers. If you can, use your own images of your business where appropriate, but free image libraries are available online if you need them.

Use URL slugs
A URL slug is the part of your web address that directs people to the blog post. Use them correctly with the keywords of your blog and you’ll see a marked improvement in SEO performance, as it is easier for visitors and search engines to understand what the page is about. Are you more likely to click on www.blog.com/post/5-tips-for-a-good-blog, or www.blog.com/post/1232981?

Anti-virus software
You should protect yourself and start using the best anti-virus software you can find, both on your PC and, if required, as part of your blog hosting software. Hackers are always looking to exploit weaknesses in websites, regardless of the size or scale of your business, so install and use anti-virus software to ensure your computer and website are protected and your work is safe.

What is your best tip for running a good blog?

12 Days of Giveaways Day 10: I Love You Forever Necklace

Today for day 10 of the 12 Days of Giveaways, we have a lovely sponsor who is anonymous, but her shop, FMJ Creation, is not!  She has such lovely things in her shop, and they're all so simply beautiful that there is something for everyone.  She did answer our Holiday questions though, have a read:


How do you usually celebrate the holidays?
I go to see these xmas lights with my family.

Are you a Black Friday/Cyber Monday shopper?
 If so, what are you planning to shop for those days this year?
I am from Hong Kong, we have no Black Friday / Cyber Monday discount among our shops but I do shopping online when these holidays come.

What is your favorite holiday food?
蘿蔔糕 (Turnip cake) is my favorite holiday food during our traditional chinese new year.

What's at the top of your holiday wishlist this year?
To balance my life between work, family and creation.

What inspires your creations at FMJ Creations?
I like flowers, natural, store, every things around me during the day can inspire me on creation.

Just look at these pretty things-click on the image to see the listing:

FMJ Creation: you break my heart. heart shape button earrings.FMJ Creation: our heart beat at one long necklace FMJ Creation: pretty single rose earrings. in coral.FMJ Creation: macy. forest green colour white filigree stud earrings FMJ Creation: funny and cute. bird and flower bobbi pin.  FMJ Creation: lucy. little wild flower stud earrings in romantic purple colour

One lucky winner will win an I Love You Forever Necklace from FMJ Creation! 
Giveaway is open worldwide and ends 12/4/14 at 12AM.  
Entering below agrees to all Terms and Conditions in the Rafflecopter.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don't forget to visit tomorrow to enter day 11 of the 12 Days of Giveaways!







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